Contractor’s industrial division powers Shepherd to profits of £31.5m for the year to June 2011

Contractor Shepherd Group has nearly doubled its annual pre-tax profits this year posting a profit of £31.5m for the year to June 2011, up from £16m last year.

The group’s strongest component was its industrial division which had an operating profit of £26.6m.

Meanwhile, Shepherd’s construction division entered profitability for the first time in years making £4m, its highest profit ever. Last year it lost £2.1m.

However, the new homes branch of the group, which includes Shepherd Homes and Homeseeker Park and Leisure Homes, recorded losses which were blamed on continued poor market conditions.

Group chairman Alan Fletcher said: “The quality of the management teams, the excellence of the product offerings, the swift action taken to improve efficiencies and sound cash management have combined to drive improved profit performance and build the group’s financial strength.

“While the continuing general economic uncertainty points to a need for caution in the short to medium term, the considerable improvement in the group’s profitability and its sound financial performance give confidence in the underlying strength and future potential of the business.”